Past eventInvitation Only

Surviving the Oil Supply Crunch: Liquids, Gases or Electrons?

5 May 2009 - 12:00am to 11:00pm

Chatham House, London


Dr Gary Kendall, SustainAbility



According to recent scenarios - focused variously on price volatility, reserves depletion, lack of investment and climate change - we urgently need to rethink our current level of dependency on crude oil, specifically within the transport sector.

Transport, by enabling the movement of goods and people, facilitates economic activity, thus the health of the global economy is inextricably linked to crude oil markets. Climate change and other environmental constraints provide further stimuli to the development of alternatives to conventional petroleum. Consequently, there is growing interest in liquid fuel substitutes, such as biofuels, gas-to-liquids, and even coal-to-liquids. But how do these options compare to fuels derived from crude oil on environmental, economical and political grounds? And is it sensible to invest in these rather than in vehicles powered by alternative energy carriers, such as gaseous fuels or electricity?

This meeting will consider what widespread changes in transport will mean for the fossil fuel industries, and debates the kind of infrastructure changes, costs and timescale necessary to facilitate the necessary transformation.

This is a meeting of the Chatham House Fossil Fuels Expert Roundtable.

Attendance at this meeting is strictly by invitation only.